The Trademark Tacking Doctrine: What is it and Who Should Decide.

In trademark law, the tacking doctrine allows an existing trademark owner to modify its mark without abandoning ownership of the original trademark. The key to allowing the modification without abandonment or loss of priority is continuity. In other words, the mark must retain a common element that symbolizes a continuing commercial impression.

Amazon’s Merchandising and Trademark Law

Muti Time Machine Inc, v. Amazon.com deals with the question of whether Amazon’s search results violate trademark law. Multi Time Machine sued Amazon for copyright infringement. For those of us who are familiar with Amazon, we have probably found ourselves searching for something on Amazon, adding it to our shopping bag, and then proceeding to find another ten items we would also like to buy. There is no doubt that Amazon benefits customers in the way that it offers complementary and competitive products. On the other hand this does not make many trademark owners happy as they may loose the purchase to a competitor

The Pink Store Prevails

A business owner in Elkorn, Nebraska recently won a trademark battle against Limited Brands giant Victoria’s Secret. Beka Doolittle, owner of the online business “The Pink Store” has been going up against Victoria’s Secret this past year over use of the word “pink”. One of the notable brands of Victoria’s Secret is it’s Pink line that caters to young women. Ms. Doolittle’s online business carries items for all ages and items for the home, all themed as (you guessed it) pink. After Victoria’s Secret submitted a petition to cancel her mark on the United State Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) , Ms. Doolittle enlisted help in order to fight back, and it paid off. Victoria’s Secret finally backed off and cancelled their petition, but with no clear reason.

Parody or Trademark Infringement? The Tale of Print T-Shirts

By Ozelle Martin | amdlawgroup.com
Lately, there seems to be a sudden burst in the number of print t-shirt lines that bear designs that are strikingly similar to those of well-known luxury brands such as Chanel, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Givenchy. Undoubtedly, these print t-shirt creators have ventured such a path, in an effort to appeal to the audiences of these very brands to whom they have become parasitic. With ammunition, in the form of potent legal departments, in tow- many of these brands are shooting off cease and desist letters like paintballs. Very often, their claim is that the printed t-shirt creators are infringing upon their marks. In response, the printed t-shirt creators raise their shields and assert that their inspired designs are mere parodies, a defense borrowed from copyright law’s fair use doctrine.

Amazon’s Loss to Lush

Lush is a beauty brand that produces products from fresh organic fruit and vegetables. Their products such as makeup, soap, and face wash are not animal tested and are made fresh by hand with little or no preservative. Lush brand chose not to sell their products on Amazon but when customers searched “lush” into the search bar, similar beauty products sold by Lush appeared in the results.

Unique is the New Black

By Diana Chan | amdlawgroup.com
In fashion, designs are continuously changing yet also seem to overlap among higher-end and lower-end brands. Designers should be wary when launching a design for their brand because of the risk that someone else may create a knockoff or variation of their original design. Because of this, designers must create something that is signature and innovative to the brand and that will to be protected under intellectual property laws.

First Step to Federally Protecting Your Copyright

Many people may confuse a trademark and a copyright. A trademark is generally a word, phrase, symbol or design or a combination thereof, that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods of one party from those of others.On the other hand, a copyright is the limited period of exclusive rights to copy, license, or otherwise exploit fixed literary or artistic expression.

The Secret is Out!

By Breanna Pendilton | amdlawgroup.com
As mentioned in a previous blog, British luxury shirt retailer Thomas Pink filed an infringement action about a year ago against Victoria’s Secret with a court in London, alleging that the Victoria’s Secret PINK line confuses customers by marketing and selling products under the label “PINK” which is also a name under the Thomas Pink brand. Well, the verdict (or should I say “the secret”) is out! Judge Colin Birss ruled against Victoria Secrets saying that customers in Europe might associate the traditional shirt maker with underwear. But is it not this difference (the distinction between shirts and underwear), which should warrant the opposite verdict?

Staples vs. Shoplet – What do you think? – International Intellectual Property Law- Case Study #18

Originally posted 2012-09-08 14:11:44. The largest office supply retailer, Staples, is suing a much smaller rival, Shoplet.com, for trademark infringement, claiming that Shoplet’s logo and website too closely resembles its own. To understand the market domination Staples has over Shoplet, Staples is the nation’s No.1 office supply retailer and the No.2 internet retailer, while Shoplet […]